ITHACA, N.Y.—Mayor Svante Myrick has announced the appointment of his third chief of staff, this one hailing from outside of the county.

Faith Vavra was announced as Myrick’s choice on Thursday morning. She replaces Dan Cogan, who announced that he was stepping down in May, after five years at the position.

Vavra, in an announcement from the city, is touted as having a “wealth of knowledge, experience, and leadership skills to the position from her years of work in local and federal government, secondary education, and non-profit agencies.”

According to the city, Vavra worked as the Director of Special Programs for the Broome County Executive’s Office and as a Deputy District Director in New York’s 22nd Congressional District, which was represented by Democrat Anthony Brindisi before his narrow defeat in 2020 to Republican Claudia Tenney. Previously, she also served as Director of Programs for the Victim Assistance Center of Akron, Ohio.

She also worked as an adjunct criminal justice instructor at SUNY Broome Community College, where she “became aware of issues surrounding recruitment in law enforcement agencies and spoke to local legislative bodies about the importance of the police reform legislation.” She holds a Bachelor’s degree in political science and master’s degrees in both criminal justice and public administration.

“I would like to thank the search committee and Mayor Myrick for this amazing opportunity,” Vavra said. “I am honored to be chosen as the next Chief of Staff for the City of Ithaca. I look forward to the future and what we can accomplish.”

Vavra comes with prominent endorsements from previous employers, included in the release.

“I want to Congratulate Faith on her appointment to the Chief of Staff position in the City of Ithaca,” Brindisi said in the release. “She was a critical part of my team while I was in Congress. Ithaca and Mayor Myrick could not have made a better choice.”

“Faith was an integral part of my executive team and specialized in local, state and federal relations,” said Jason T. Garnar, Broome County Executive. “She managed special projects and constituent services with commitment and dedication to the community. Congratulations to the City of Ithaca and Mayor Myrick on an excellent choice.”

Matt Butler

Matt Butler is the Education & Public Health Reporter at the Ithaca Voice. He can be reached by email at mbutler@ithacavoice.com